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Will Utahns with multiple sclerosis want cannabis treatments?

Marijuana is only alternative therapy with merit for MS symptoms, the American Academy of Neurology says.



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kstewart@sltrib.com

Twitter:@KStewart4Trib

At a glance

Support from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society: “The question of whether marijuana — produced from the flowering top of the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa — should be used for symptom management in multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex one. It is generally agreed that better therapies are needed for distressing symptoms of MS — including pain, tremor and spasticity. Still, there are uncertainties about the benefits of marijuana relative to its side effects. The fact that marijuana is an illegal drug in many states and by federal statute ... further complicates the issue.

The Society supports the rights of people with MS to work with their health care provider to access marijuana for medical purposes in accordance with legal regulations in those states where such use has been approved. In addition, the Society believes that more research is needed to better understand the benefits and potential risks of marijuana and its derivatives as a treatment for MS.”

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